With Frontier Café's current exhibit of documentary-photo stories titled "About Face," the café pairs with Portland's Salt Institute for Documentary Studies to bring real Maine stories to the Brunswick community.

Frontier has developed a close relationship with Salt; since opening in Fort Andross three years ago, Frontier has exhibited work produced at Salt annually.

"It was very natural for us," said Frontier's Michael Gilroy on connecting with Salt, an intensive 15-week program in which students develop skills for journalistic and documentary storytelling.

The institute offers track writing, radio and photography, thus coinciding nicely with Frontier's mission of connecting with the broader community through various means.

"About Face" is the final show of the Fall 2009 Salt photography students and exhibits their photojournalistic stories.

"We have such similar goals, primarily because of story telling," said Gilroy about exhibiting Salt's final show.

"This photographic work is an example of Salt's visual storytelling and is so tied to our whole mission, which is really based on storytelling and connecting people to the world," she added.

"Here at Frontier we get to do this in all sorts of ways—through film, music, food and the gallery space. Salt is really all about the ability to tell a local story so it just made complete sense to team up with them," said Gilroy.

The show is comprised of the Salt photographers' Maine-based photographic stories, ranging from glimpses into the lives of boatmen and drag queens to more personal experiences with suicide.

"There are so many different stories being told [through the photographs]. There is no central theme, just a wide variety of work," said Donna Galluzzo, Executive Director of the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies.

Galluzzo echoes Gilroy's sentiment regarding the similarity between Frontier and Salt's missions.

"We're trying to show our work at Frontier on a regular basis. We really love Frontier and what they do," said Galluzzo.

The exhibition at Frontier is especially important for Galluzzo because it is an opportunity for Salt to broaden their influence and to share their stories with a wider audience.

"We want to show our students' work outside of Portland," said Galluzzo. "We're trying to give people from Maine, but outside of Portland, an opportunity to see our student work and make it more convenient for people in the Mid-coast area."

Although "About Face" has been on the walls of Frontier since March 8, an event on Wednesday, April 14 will provide a more synthesized, comprehensive look into the work produced last semester at Salt.

That evening at 7 p.m., Frontier will host a multimedia exhibit of documentary work; the event will showcase the work of the nine writers, nine photographers and 14 radio producers that studied at the institute last semester.

Gilroy said that Frontier provides a perfect venue for exhibiting the depth and diversity of the work that Salt students produce.

"Because of the nature of our space, we are able to put up the photographic piece of the show but on the evening of [April] 14 we are also able to bring the students and the public together, allowing the students to exhibit all the elements of radio, writing and photography. It's great because it provide the platform and the audience to the writers that isn't there when work is just displayed on the gallery wall," he said.

"We will play some Salt radio pieces and show some slideshows that combine still photos and audio work. It's an opportunity to show some of the student work to a [different] audience," said Galluzzo.

"We wanted a chance to show more of what we do. We don't just do photography. We do radio work as well as photo-radio collaborations and some writing, radio and photo collaborations [of] multimedia work," said Galluzzo.

Gilroy added that the ability to showcase radio, writing and photography "will really bring the show to life and show the scope of the projects."

For this evening of multimedia, documentary storytelling, Frontier Café will be offering its full menu of organic and locally grown meals. Frontier and welcomes members of the Bowdoin and Brunswick community to come early and grab a bite before the event begins.

"It's also a great space to get dinner and a glass of wine and just sit back and watch the show—our theater space allows for that."

"About Face" will be showing through May 1 at Frontier Cafe. The multimedia event will be held on April 14 at 7 p.m. is free and open to the public.